Category: Barcelona Info Blog

28
Feb

Snowy Days In Barcelona

Snowy days in barcelona

It´s a rare phenomenon to have snowfall in Barcelona, the Snow has appeared twice in February 2018. For Barcelona residents that are not accustomed to seeing snow, it unleashes an avalanche of comments on social networks. Barcelona’s population were very enthusiastic and took pictures of the snow that did not cover all of Barcelona. However, Barcelona’s authorities asked for the population to avoid the unnecessary displacements and to opt for the metro instead of cars.
This snow episode is due to the passage of the Siberian cold wave on the Cataluña territory that came from the east of Europe. This wave also affects the rest of the Europe with very low temperatures which dropped under 0 degrees. Despite these cold temperatures, the little snowflakes that fell from the sky will remains in Barcelona population’s memories and the fine white coat that covered some parts of Barcelona offered beautiful pictures and a great playground for the kids.
But we are far away from the last snow episode called “la gran Nevada” dating back to 2010 in Cataluña when most people were surprised not by the snow, but by the strong wind that has accompanied it, which totally paralyzed Barcelona for a few days. Although in the last few years there have been a few flakes in the city, you must go back a lot further to remember such a big snowfall.
Finally, if you, as tourists, have the chance to attend a snowfall, do not lose time, take out your cameras and try to get the most beautiful photos of Barcelona under the snowflakes because it doesn´t last for long.

07
Feb

BARCELONA IS A SAFE PLACE TO VISIT IF YOU KNOW HOW TO AVOID THE GENERAL CRIME ISSUE, PICKPOCKETS

The city of Barcelona is a magnificent and spectacular city because of its great and old architecture. Another major advantage of Barcelona city is the average annual temperature of 21.2 °C during the day and 15.1 °C at night. Both combined attracts a lot of tourism. Therefore, Barcelona is striking new records in the number of visitors every year. In the last year, those numbers estimated 32 million.

You can be assured that Barcelona is a safe place to visit. Aggression and violence in the Barcelona nightlife are rare. Both day and night police officers are patrolling on streets and in traffic. However, only certain areas are troublesome, like downtown, and the big touristic attractions.  Barcelona pickpockets are not violent, they are sneaky, quick and subtle. You might even not notice when you got robbed.

Here are 10 quick Barcelona safety tips:
1. Don’t carry your wallet in your back pocket
2. Don’t put phones, cameras on table at cafes
3. Wear your rucksack on your front in touristy areas
4. Always keep bags on your lap at cafes/coffee bars
5. Be wary of any strangers approaching you or touching you
6. Don’t participate in street games like the three shell game
7. Be extra aware on beaches and in the metro
8. Be extra aware when watching street shows
9. Be extra aware on La Rambla, Sagrada Familia church, Sants station and in the metro
10. Be extra aware in hotel lobbies, at airport bus stops and airport transport

 

Source: Barcelonayellow

05
Feb

Rainy day ideas

 

We have some great ideas for you to pass the time in Barcelona on a rainy day.

Rain is not typical for Barcelona. The rainy season starts in March until April and then again from October onwards. Commonly it only rains for 1 or 2 days, but there are periods that can last for a few days. If it happens here are a few things you can do without getting wet.

Here are our ideas:

Play escape rooms – Prices start from 50 €.

Activities that you might find attractive are the escape rooms. If you like adventure puzzle and mystery, then you might consider trying the new trendy physical adventure game.

An escape room is an adventure game in a “locked” room. You and your friends (usually 2 to 6 persons) get “locked” in the escape room with a countdown usually of 1 hour. During that hour, as the clock counts down, your group has to complete the adventure objective by solving a number of clues, hints and using strategy in the room. Barcelona’s biggest escape room is G.point at Port Forum near.

 

Hop-on-hop-off bus tours – Prices start from 27 €.

The excitement of visiting Barcelona might be washed by a rainy day.  Joining a hop-on-hop-off bus tour, you can still enjoy Barcelona. While you are on a hop-on-hop-off bus tour, you will enjoy seeing the fantastical sights of Barcelona such as the Sagrada Familia church and other modernist landmarks. Barcelona has two companies that offer bus tours, Barcelona Bus Turistica and Barcelona City Tours.

bus tour

 

 

Museums – Prices start from 5 €.

Museums can be a great place to visit in wet weather. The magic of the art and history will give you an unforgettable journey throw time. In Barcelona, you can find the Museum Picasso and Fundació Joan Miró features modern art by their namesakes. City history museum MUHBA, includes several Roman archaeological sites. During the bus tour, you will also enjoy spending time inside the museums and many other spectacular attractions along the way.

 

Spas & wellness centers Barcelona – Prices start from 15 €.

Usually, people ignore the benefits of a relaxant massage for the stressed body lost in the day-by-day routine.  A relaxing massage for a few hours in a spa might be a great idea to spend time on a rainy day. If you are a novice, you might consider going to a normal laze massage in any spa. In case you want to experiment something unfamiliar, then find Barcelona’s only Arab spa and baths where you can enjoy a “wine bath”.

 

Shopping centers and malls

Shopping is the most favored choice for the part of the day when it is raining in Barcelona. Many excellent shopping malls and centers are counted in the area of Barcelona. A fun shopping center in Barcelona is Las Arenas on Plaza Espanya. The shopping mall is located in a former bullfighting ring. There you might find top brand shops and many restaurants.

shoping mall

Besides Las Arena, there are two big shopping malls at each end of the long avenue in Barcelona called Avenida Diagonal. At the top end, you can find L’illa Diagonal shopping mall which is perhaps the most exclusive mall in Barcelona and the Diagonal Mar shopping center a little off center down at the other end of Avenida Diagonal near the sea in the Diagonal Mar area of Barcelona.

 

Barcelona on a rainy day can be fun and you might see something interesting when you are familiar with uncommon activities that you probably had not planned at all to do while visiting Barcelona.

Source: Barcelonayellow

 

19
Jul

The issue of touristic licenses

Today economy has evolved a lot thanks (or because) of one company, Uber. The economy is uberized, which means anyone can be a cab driver, a food delivery but also a real estate agent.

As you may know, Barcelona is definitely one of the places to visit, not only in Europe but in the whole world. Hot weather, nice beach, people smiling and always in a good mood, cheap cost of living. All of those elements put together explain the huge amount of tourist coming to Barcelona thoughtout the year.

The number of tourisTourists forbidden in Barcelonat in Barcelona just exploded, it it went from 2,45 million in 1993 to nearly 9 millions in 2015. With over 8 millions people coming to visit the capital of Catalonia that is populated of 1,6 million of people, Barcelona is pretty much victim of its own success, so much that the Mayor of the city Ada Collau decided to freeze touristic licences, but the other reason was also in order to evaluate the number of people coming into Barcelona. A part of the population is unhappy about this effect of mass tourism, so much so that that some protesting occurred.

But before going any further, what is a touristic licence? It’s an permission that is delivered by the Mayor which allows the owner of a place to rent a housing to a tourist, then the owner is registered in “the official Registry of Tourism in Catalonia” , this way the owner will be able to rent fully his flat to someone for a period equal or inferior to 31 days to someone. We must really keep in mind that it’s the owner on which weights every responsabilities, the tenant has no power in the whole process. The tenant is exposing himself to important sanctions if he sub-leases the place or even a room to a tourist without the consent of the owner.

If the authorities catch an illegal rent, the owner is subject to a fine from 3,000€ to 600.000€.

A such negative feeling of tourist by Barcelonan people is animated by the behaviour of some tourists. Some behave very disrespectfully, throw trash in the street and moreover, they party and make noise all night long, which really disturb residents.

The mayor started freezing all those licence in april 2014, but for now, there is no discussion in order to give licences again. The only way to get around would be to make mid-term rentals, (1 to 11 months). If you’re looking for a mid or long term contract, feel free to contact us at : rebecca@rubybcn.com

05
Jan

What is PER?

Buy to let is one of the most profitable options for small investors now. Gross Profitability for rental in Spain is 4.6%… Much more appetizing than the current interest rates offered at the bank. Banks are now freeing up more money for savers to be able to buy to let. This news should also motivate all owners who are holding empty flats. Below is the explanation on how to make an apartment rental profitable.

téléchargement

Find out what is your PER (Price Earnings Ratio).

The latest report from the Bank of Spain on Market Indicators Housing shows that Gross Profitability of the apartments amount to 4.6% in the second quarter. There are no banks that can offer that rate at the moment. The interest on deposits of the leading financial institutions in the country are less than 1% and in very few cases come to just surpass this. This 4.6% Gross Profitability equals to an average PER of about 22 years or 264 months.

But lets look at this in parts, what is PER? It is  the number of years it would take to pay for the apartment with the rent money. It is calculated by dividing the price to the annual rent apartment. So the PER is that asks you how long it would take years to recover the money invested in buying the rented house. This means that the PER serves you to find out the profitability of the apartment when rented.

Lets look at an example:

If your flat will cost 250,000 euros and  you achieve 6,800 euros annual rental income, it will take 37 years to recover the investment. (Too long)

During the housing bubble the average PER was 33. At the end of 2008 it had dropped to 27. And it´s now at 22.

You should always try to have a PER below the country’s average for you to make a profitable rental.

Enalquiler – http://bit.ly/1MQo9Oi

16
Jun

Renting Barcelona Apartments Cheaper For Brits, As Pound Strengthens

09.06.2015

 

Are you a Brit, thinking of renting an apartment in Barcelona? If so, you’ll be pleased to know that renting a beautiful Barcelona flat will now leave less of a hole in your bank balance. This is because the pound recently hit a 7.5-year high versus the euro, at 1.4256, its strongest since November 7th 2007!

 

What this means for you is that, when you exchange currencies for your Barcelona holiday, you’ll now get more euros. For example, let’s say you exchange £2,500 to rent a Barcelona apartment. With that sum, you’ll now get +€560 more than if you’d visited the Catalan capital back at the start of 2014, when the pound was far weaker.

 

In other words, that’s an extra +€560 sitting in your pocket, at no additional cost to you, just because the exchange rate has strengthened! With that sort of money, you could rent a more luxurious Barcelona flat, splash out on some authentic Catalan cuisine, or just pocket the sizeable saving for a rainy day!

 

Moreover, it could soon become even more affordable to holiday in Barcelona, if sterling continues to climb versus the euro. The pound could exceed this 7-year high, first, if Greece exits the Eurozone, as looks entirely possible. Second, the pound may also continue to climb, because the UK economy is easily outpacing the Eurozone’s.

 

With this in mind, make the most of this advantageous exchange rate, and rent your Barcelona apartment today!

 

By Peter Lavelle

Pure FX

http://www.purefx.co.uk

+44 (0) 1494 671800

peter.lavelle@purefx.co.uk

19
Dec

New Tax Changes in Spain

On 27 November 2014 the government approved three laws amending the Income Tax on Personal Income, Income Tax and Value Added Tax.

Filling the Tax Form
Of these changes, some worth noting are:

 

Withholding Tax Rate from 1 January 2015:

– In 2015 the percentage of retention and dividend income applicable to self-employed professionals, will be reduced in general from 21% to 19%   and by 2016 will be cut to 18%.

– Retention for self-employed professionals with incomes less than 15,000€ will drop from 21% to 15%.

– The Rate of 21% withholding rents changes to 20% (19% in 2016)

-The General taxation of non-residents will fall to 24%, and to 19% in 2016 if the taxpayer resides in the Member States of the European Union.

-The Foreigners working in Spain (except professional sports) will be taxed as non-residents at a rate of 24% for the first 600,000 euros compensation, and for five consecutive tax periods.

 

DEFINITION OF ECONOMIC ACTIVITY

From 1 January 2015, will be considered as income from economic activities (instead of earned income) earned by the taxpayer from a participating institution in the capital (ie, it is a member ) arising from the performance of professional activities, when the taxpayer is included in the special self-employed (or an alternative mutual social welfare).

Income Tax:

-Deductions For new families or dependents (children and parents) with disabilities who receive 1,200 euros to 4,800 euros if cumulative add several of these situations. You can ask the Tax Agency payment of these three deductions in advance at a rate of 100 per month.

-In The gains from the sale of houses disappear offset coefficients (gains benefits of a good asset acquired before 1995) for the transfer of assets worth more than 400,000 euros (including real estate and other assets ) and disappear completely coefficients updated value.

-The Capital gains for those over 65 years old are exempt if they are transformed into annuities to supplement the pension, to a maximum of 240,000 euros.

-The Capital gains generated by a payment in kind or desauci exempt.

-The Compensation for dismissal without s’ expands to 180,000 euros and allows the reduction of 30% even if the compensation is received in installments.

-To Promote patronage ‘s general increase the deduction for donations up to ten points. (from 25% to 35%)

-To Expand participation in social patronage is set a 75% deduction for donations less than 150 euros.

-The Exemption of dividends up to 1,500 euros will be deleted.

-The Deduction for rental housing tenants usually disappear under previous contracts for 2015.

– The tax exemption landlords had when they rented the house for children under 30 years disappears.

– State Exempt income earned by bank accounts or life insurance maintained for a minimum of 5 years and that is not always bring more than 5,000 euros per year.

– Removes the distinction of the gains in less than a year, are taxed at the taxpayer’s marginal rate and will do the types of savings.

-The Maximum deductible contribution pension plans will be 8,000 euros.

-It Reduced from 10 to 5 years the minimum period of one individual systematic savings plan (SSP).

-You Can recover amounts pension plans within 10 years.

 

 

VAT

-In Compliance with a judgment of the European Court will rise at the rate of 21% Intermediates preparation of medicines, medical equipment, appliances, medical instruments.

-It Will maintain the reduced rate of 10% products designed to alleviate deficiencies, such as prescription glasses and contact lenses, prostheses, wheelchairs or crutches, as well as gases, veins, eye patches or kits.

-The Sector of flowers and ornamental plants have a reduced VAT of 10%, compared to 21% that was taxed.

-EBooks will be taxed in the country where they are downloaded.

-Tributaran Destination in the online services, telecommunications, radio and television when the recipient is an individual.

 

Corporation tax

-They will cut 30% to 28% in 2015 and 25% in 2016, less credit institutions and companies engaged in the exploration, research and exploitation of hydrocarbons.

-The New companies taxed at 15% in the first tax period that the tax base is positive and the next, unless you are entitled to a reduced rate.

-The Limit to offset tax losses are calculated on taxable income prior to the application of the new book capitalization.

-The Compensation of the loss carryforwards is limited to 60% from 2016 to avoid recourse to borrowing, although applied on the basis of one million euros to not hurt SMEs.

-The Spanish films will deduct 20% of the first million euros invested and 18% of the remaining three million.

-The Development activities initial demonstration projects or pilot projects related to animation and video games will apply the 12% deduction of the expenses incurred during the tax period directly related to these activities that effectively apply its execution and consist specifically for individual projects.

-Deduction of 20% to support the production and exhibition of live performances of music and performing arts.

 

This text has been directly translated from Cabre y Assosiats newletter. For more information on how the new tax laws will effect you please contact the accountants directly at:

 

Cabre y Assosiats

933 429 690

24
Jan

Average price of a flat to rent in Barcelona is 890€

According to research carried out by ´Enalquiler´ the average price of a flat in Barcelona in December 2012 was 890€. That´s down 4.1% from the last quarter and a whole 9.3% from last year.

Rental Prices Spain

This is the time to take advantage of the Spanish Housing Market. We recommend if you have the cash it´s time to buy, if you don´t have the cash it´s time to re-negotiate your rent or look somewhere cheaper, because in this economy, every penny counts. If you are interested in renting or buying in Barcelona, write to rebecca@rubyslippersbcn.com to arrange a free consultation or check out the packages Ruby Slippers BCN offer, they will save you time and money and help to point you in the right direction.

If your photo/image has been used in this blog and you would like it removed please e-mail: rebecca@rubyslippersbcn.com
28
Feb

Tips On Running A Successful Business

Successful BusinessWhat is the point of the business? What is the idea?

Make a business plan even if you don´t need funding, this will help to make a clear image of how the business will work and run and set you targets, ie. by year 1 we will be turning “200,000€” a year

What is the marketing plan? And which section of the population is this directed at?

It´s highly important to have a marketing plan as if people don´t know who you are or what you do then how will you sell anything?
Don´t underestimate the value of facebook and twitter pages, as well as google. The good thing about having a following is that you can update your clients as soon as you have a new product or a new offer to show them, cost free. Adverts in magazines or newspapers are also offer good marketing, but you need to find out who are the readers and what age range will they fall into (Are they your potential customer?)

How much should you spend on advertising?

You have to make assumptions, how many of those adverts you put out will come back to you. ie. how much do you spend to get a client and will that client be a one-off client or will they come back for more business.

What is the competition?

What are their strengths and flaws. Research 5 direct competitors and 5 indirect competitors and figure out what it is that you will offer that will be different. ie. they are a well known brand but the customer service is lacking.

Common Mistakes

Don´t give any freebies to friends, it won´t benefit the company and if it´s for free people won´t see any value in your product or service.

Family Help – On one hand you could have someone in your family or close circle of friends working for you on the cheap or for nothing, you completely trust them. However what happens when it goes wrong? If they can´t do the job correctly you look at the choice of losing a friend or losing your business…

Update or fail – For example if you have a computer from the 90´s that takes 20 minutes to load and the internet connection is terrible, it would take your employee 2 hours to do work that could be done in 20 minutes if they had the latest technology and if you have the latest equipment. So consider how much you would spend on a new computer to what you are having to pay in wages to that employee.

Don´t waste your time with extra long breaks, sorting out papers (be tidy and organised and you´ll be more efficient.)

Keep your costs down – don´t splash out on fancy offices and staff until you have enough cash flow to do so, work with the minimum and don´t hire people to do a job that you can do yourself.